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View Full Version : Audi Driving Experience @ Pocono Raceway!!!!



Daft
08-20-2008, 09:27 AM
Hey guys/gals,

I just attended the Audi Driving Experience yesterday at Pocono Raceway. The entire event was AWESOME!

The had just about every car that Audi offers in North America there to sit in and in most cases drive on the track.

The main purpose of the event was to showcase the B8 A4 and all of it's new abilities due to the Audi Drive Select system. The B8 A4 was presented in two ways:

1. On the Pocono East road course against the BMW 328xi, MB C300 4matic and the Lexus IS250 AWD.

2. On the Eastern leg of the main racetrack and across the infield road course at higher speeds and heavier braking.

Overall the B8 performed amazingly. I was really surprised at how much the drive select changes the car.

Drive Select control 4 parameters of the car:

1. Transmission - Longer gear use and more aggressive shifts
2. Braking - Intelligent brake use to reduce nose dive and squatting
3. Suspension - Real time damper control to keep the car flat in corners
4. Steering - Steering ratio reduction and less sensitivity at high speeds

The total sum of these changes was immediately noticeable in every way. The car we each used was a german spec 3.2L V6 with the 6-speed auto tranny.

The BMW, MB and Lexus were all V6 cars with AWD and automatic trannys. The IS250 was quite underpowered but, they do not offer an AWD IS350. The C300 was also slightly less HP but again, there is no C350 with 4matic. The C300 4matic was the "sport sedan" version with the 7-speed auto tranny and a 228HP V6. The BMW 328xi is a 6-speed auto with 230HP 3.0L V6.

The BMW was better at braking than the Lexus or the MB. The MB had horrible body roll and extremely loose steering. The Lexus was a bit more nimble than the MB and the BMW since it's curb weight was lower. Hands down, the MB had the worst brakes out of every car.

All cars ran their OEM tires and OEM inflation pressures. None of these cars were equipped with a sport package (including the Audi). All vehicles has 17" alloy wheel packages.

The biggest surprise to me was the reduction in body roll and increase in braking on the A4 when using the dynamic mode of the drive select. The A4 felt like it had Porsche brakes on it.

After we had beaten the hell out of those cars, we then moved over to the main racetrack and drove the B8 at higher speeds and heavier braking. Our peak speeds on the track were about 100MPH on the banked corners of the east end of the main racetrack. The infield had some chicanes and sharp corners to fully test body roll.

We were very surprised to see how smooth the ride was in comfort mode and then noticed how the car tilted and tightened up when we swapped to dynamic mode. The motor even revved up since it no longer wished to use overdrive on the transmission. I also noticed that the accelerator was way more sensitive to input. I didn't need to mash it any more to start heavy acceleration.

Once we had finished all of this and were done with a survey, we then had the freedom to use any of the other A/Q vehicles in Audi's linieup on the racetrack for 10 laps at a time.

We had access to the A6 4.2 S-line, A3 3.2 S-line, A8L 4.2, TT 3.2 and the Q7 4.2. I drove the A6 4.2 and rode in the Q7 4.2 with some friends. The A6 was great to drive on the track and had no problem keeping up with the instructor's moves. The Q7 was the biggest surprise. Despite it's curb weight and added body roll, it stuck to the road like glue, even at 90+MPH on the racetrack with the other cars.

I will not deny that we beat these cars DOWN! The tires on these cars were gloppy when we left. If there was a way to skid out of control or skid off, we would have found it. Absolutely amazing day at the track.[up]

Picture Time....[:D]

Daft
08-20-2008, 09:30 AM
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 001.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 002.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 003.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 004.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 005.jpg

Here's Vimal (VJ's A6) getting ready to drive the B8 on the racetrack.

http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 006.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 007.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 008.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 009.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 010.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 011.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 012.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 014.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 015.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 016.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 017.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 022.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 023.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 024.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 025.jpg

Daft
08-20-2008, 09:34 AM
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 026.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 027.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 028.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 029.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 030.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 031.jpg
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http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 033.jpg
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http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 035.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 036.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 037.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 038.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 039.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 040.jpg

Daft
08-20-2008, 09:36 AM
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 041.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 042.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 043.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 044.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 045.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 046.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 047.jpg
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http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 049.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 050.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 051.jpg
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http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 054.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 055.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 057.jpg

This was me driving the A6 4.2.

http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 058.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 059.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 060.jpg

Daft
08-20-2008, 09:40 AM
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 061.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 062.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 063.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 064.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 065.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 066.jpg
http://www.daftsgarage.com/ADE/Audi 067.jpg

SoCalS4Avant
08-20-2008, 01:48 PM
Awesome pictures, and looks like an amazing time you had there!

Which program did you do? The Half-Day Enthusiast?

VJ's A6
08-20-2008, 02:31 PM
Nice write up Brett.. Here are all the pic's I took..
http://picasaweb.google.com/joy.vimal/PoconoRaceway?authkey=iGmP7aAa11M

Daft
08-20-2008, 03:06 PM
Awesome pictures, and looks like an amazing time you had there!

Which program did you do? The Half-Day Enthusiast?

Actually, this was the FREE 2-hour driving experience. We were there from 9am - 1:30PM. We drove almost the entire time.

bob12312357
08-20-2008, 05:36 PM
Nice write up. Looked like a lot of fun. Pocono is a very bumpy track, and while not good for track days IMHO, it's very good for finding the performance of a vehicle on the street due to the track surfaces ummm character.

DoGGRoBBer
08-20-2008, 05:58 PM
I had a Great Time!!! For all of you who were told about this Audi Driving Experience and didn't show....You missed out..... Daft count me in for the next one..... Fun for All..... I was truly amazed at how the new A4 dominated the competitors...snappy throttle, almost no under steer and it stuck to the track like glue. The MB and BMW were total let downs..sloppy steering, delayed up shifts under full throttle..and lots of body roll. The only one I thought was a mild contender was the Lexus...even with the least horsepower on the field, it was also the lightest. It was nice in the sharpest of turns while keeping the line and braked well.

BTW.... The "Friends" driving the Q7 were myself and Troy one of Brett's old friends.... Much to my surprise That SUV handled very well...it took some getting used to the body roll and slower acceleration . But after a few laps I had it on the tall of the A3 in all of the turns. Just had a hard time catching up in the straight away.

-Mike[drive]

Kitter32
08-20-2008, 06:32 PM
Great pics! I went to the 3 o' clock session. I had an amazing time! It was fun to push the limits of the cars. What did you think of the competing cars?

blkb7
08-20-2008, 07:15 PM
Actually, this was the FREE 2-hour driving experience. We were there from 9am - 1:30PM. We drove almost the entire time.

FOR FREE?!?!?![o_o] where do i sign up??

AUDILUX
08-21-2008, 08:17 AM
Awesome write-up Brett. Thanks for putting together such a neat summary. I was there from 9AM-3PM yesterday also. I was in the 9:30 class and stuck around to drive the A3 and the TT. I have to say that I pretty much agree with everything in your write-up. I was blown away by the handling of the Audi and was very disappointed with the other 3 (especially the BMW-since I had high hopes for that car). The Mercedes was by far the worst. The only car that was maybe a little more fun to drive than the A4 (and not by a whole lot) was the TT. The TT was very tight in the turns and did not disappoint on the straights. I'll post my pics soon.

Daft
08-21-2008, 08:33 AM
FOR FREE?!?!?![o_o] where do i sign up??

There are still seats open for tomorrow morning at 9:30am:

http://www.audidrivingexperience.com/2008/?area=event&track_id=317

You need to be there 30mins before your time slot.

AUDILUX
08-21-2008, 09:02 AM
There are still seats open for tomorrow morning at 9:30am:

http://www.audidrivingexperience.com/2008/?area=event&track_id=317

You need to be there 30mins before your time slot.

That's for the 1/2 day enthusiast program for $595 [o_o]

Daft
08-21-2008, 09:10 AM
That's for the 1/2 day enthusiast program for $595 [o_o]

Hehe. ooops. you're right I just noticed that. Sorry.

Das General
08-21-2008, 12:57 PM
Nice!

Too bad I didn't have my car...I had no way of getting up there yesterday.

xlacrosse
08-21-2008, 04:45 PM
I was supposed to be at the event... couldn't get away from work on a Wednesday. Looks like an awesome time!

kneel
08-21-2008, 06:56 PM
Yeah was supposed to be there too. I got stuck with important safety meeting for Metro North. My buddy Dave made it out there though. Hopefullynext year i'll make it.

Curnal7s4o2
08-21-2008, 08:36 PM
in the s4 i live no more than 17 min from there and how did i not know about this.....wtf [headbang]

Allmine
08-22-2008, 05:51 AM
Hey gang! I was also there for the 9:30 meet Everything you guys wrote above is dead on correct! Couldn't agree more the new A4 is amazing.... I didn't see any shots of the TT so here is one with me in it..... Awesome Time!!

TT
http://i298.photobucket.com/albums/mm261/Emiesdad/IMG_4743.jpg

Inside of the S5 (seats were awesome!)
http://i298.photobucket.com/albums/mm261/Emiesdad/IMG_4715.jpg

Daft
08-22-2008, 07:44 AM
in the s4 i live no more than 17 min from there and how did i not know about this.....wtf [headbang]


Sorry Jeremy. I totally forgot about this event. I signed up for it in Feb.

Hopefully they'll do something else at Pocono next year.

misterted
08-23-2008, 04:02 PM
I attended Friday at 9:30am.
Got to do six laps each on the track in an S5 and then an R8.

It was fabulouse and IMHO well worth the $595 fee.


Regards,
Ted

Daft
08-23-2008, 06:32 PM
I attended Friday at 9:30am.
Got to do six laps each on the track in an S5 and then an R8.

It was fabulouse and IMHO well worth the $595 fee.


Regards,
Ted

I'm pretty jealous. I tried to convince the wife that the $600 fee was sooo cheap for what I was going to do to those cars. She's didn't buy in...[:(]

blkb7
08-24-2008, 10:52 PM
That's for the 1/2 day enthusiast program for $595 [o_o]

so no more freebe-s??

Vito Roma
09-08-2008, 06:29 AM
sweet ass pics!!

Kievskiy
09-08-2008, 08:23 PM
mine didn't buy it either[mad] but Free program was awesome too.

I'm pretty jealous. I tried to convince the wife that the $600 fee was sooo cheap for what I was going to do to those cars. She's didn't buy in...[:(]

scoTT la rock
09-09-2008, 02:27 PM
everything looks sweet.

i see the pic of the bang & olufsen audio system. what did you think of that?

i work for bang & olufsen in new jersey, so im always interested in peoples opinions.

Daft
09-10-2008, 06:01 PM
Unfortunately, they had no CDs in the cars and the nearest radio stations to the racetrack were crap so we really had no good exposure to the capabilities of the A4's B&O system..[:(]

Just based on the reviews of the A8 and R8 setups, it must blow the older Bose setups out of the water. I'll have to go try one at the dealership next time I go.